DayBreaks for 11/20/12 – Sharing the Bone
From the DayBreaks archive for 11/20/02:
Luke 6:38 – “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
2 Cor. 8:2-5 – “2 Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. 3 For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, 4 they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints. 5 And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will.”
Scripture is abundant with God’s promises to meet our needs. It is also abundant in its exhortations to us to be givers – just like our Father. It even tells us that if we are generous, we will receive generously, too. (That doesn’t necessarily mean that we’ll get money in return – but we will be blessed!)
In the passage above from 2 Corinthians, a beautiful example is given to us by the Macedonian churches. These people in Macedonia were not rich. They weren’t even of average income, it would appear. Paul says that “Out of the most severe trial…their extreme poverty” these people GAVE. They didn’t just give what they could…they gave “even beyond their ability”.
How could they do that? How could parents give when their own children may have been hungry? The key is in verse 5: “They gave themselves first to the Lord…”. They had entrusted themselves, their livelihoods, their next meal and the next meal of their children perhaps, to the Lord. They had faith. They trusted God to be as good as His word.
Generosity. Giving charitably. In America we may consider it a sacrifice to give up an extra $100 while we take our big paychecks to the bank. And for some, that $100 is a sacrifice, no doubt. God knows and God sees whatever sacrifice His children make for one another – and for His kingdom. But we can also fool ourselves about our charity, too. I believe it was Jack London who put it something like this: “Charity isn’t giving a bone to the dog. It is sharing the bone with the dog when you’re just as hungry as he is.” Do you get it? The Macedonians were as hungry, or perhaps even more hungry, than those they gave to.
An incredible story, and incredible example. How is your giving? Join me in searching our hearts – knowing that God searches them knows the truth about each of us – and He also knows the name of every hungry, starving family across the world that will go to bed hungry tonight, and tomorrow, and the day after that. God asks us to give ourselves first to Him, and then to get busy following the example of the Macedonians.
Copyright 2002 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>
PRAYER: When we look into our pantries, closets, homes and bank accounts, help us to see how rich we are…and to share the “bone”! Amen.
Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
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Want to help the poor children of the world? Here’s a couple links to projects at I Am 2 Partners, Inc.:
To help feed and protect the 37 orphans at Bright Future Children’s Home in Migori, Kenya, click here: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=RKR8ZNZX4UVPA
To help put in a purified water system for the Good Shepherd Pediatric Hospital in Kigali, Rwanda, click here: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=B7U2JA5QSYCRC